The science, technology, engineering, and math fields are not only some of the most well-paid industries, they also offer all professionals a great level of job security. Even though universities have been looking to increase the number of women students enrolled at their schools, there’s inequality between men and women when it comes to interest and involvement.
Perhaps not enough prominent women in data science are known to young girls as they grow up. Maybe parents aren’t encouraging their daughters to get involved with STEM-based activities and extracurricular programs. Below, the most telling reasons that women are not more involved in the STEM field will be discussed, along with ways to change the tide.
The Infamous Glass Ceiling
From ‘Gamergate’ to the fact that Apple had to even hire a high ranking official to ensure that company has a diverse team, women have a tougher time going places in STEM, and in data science specifically. When any one group of persons dominates a field, it is because they inadvertently support their own.
In other words, if males dominate the data science industry, they’re going to hire more men that look like them and will be more resistant to the idea of promoting female employees. If anyone should understand this phenomenon, it is scientists. They can understand statistics, bias, and use logic to analyze why this is the case.
Fewer Examples of Women in STEM
Even when you watch a movie involving scientists, you’re likely to see a leading man playing the main role. ‘Hidden Figures’ is one of the biggest Hollywood productions involving multiple female mathematicians performing work that is critical to the advancement of space travel and technology.
Most little girls grew up not being able to name a ton of influential women data scientists because they aren’t as well known or touted as male scientists.
Not Enough Support for Female STEM Students
You’ve likely known a few families where the parents push their children to go into certain fields. In fact, they start planning for their sons to become doctors or engineers while their kids are still in elementary school, going so far as to hire tutors and plan tours of colleges before their children can make a choice about their own lives. This type of support may not be best for either male or female children, but there is a lack of support of girls that go into STEM.
There are more men in the STEM fields because the world’s first scientists and mathematicians were males. Fortunately, things have changed since the 16th and 17th centuries and women aren’t banned from working outside the home or getting a formal education.
Young ladies don’t need to be pressured to go into STEM, but they should know that the option is available to them from an early age. They should be encouraged to join chess clubs and math leagues, and discover all that math, science, engineering and technology has to offer both boys and girls at every step of the way.